Getting Started with Therapy FAQ’s

Beginning therapy is usually a daunting experience for most people. So being a little prepared can be useful to reduce nerves and get the most out of your session with your therapist. Here are some frequently asked questions and suggestions that will assist you along the way. Including what you can do if you are on a waiting list to see a therapist at the practice or another service.

I’m on a waiting list, what can I do while I wait for my session?

Following the pandemic, demand for child, adolescent and family therapists has increased exponentially. This means that waiting times, while usually longer in regional and rural areas was always long, have been further extended. To enable you to have some psycho-education before you receive a service at the practice, and to make sure that we are the best fit; a self-paced program has been developed for you to complete before your first session at the practice. It is called the Side by Side Psychology Foundations and you can access it for FREE here.

Do I need a referral to see a psychologist or therapist?

No, you do not have to have a referral from you medical practitioner to see someone at Side by Side Psychology. However if you are eligible for rebates via Medicare a referral from your GP, Paediatrician or Psychiatrist will be required. You may get partial rebates on between 6-10 sessions depending on the the therapist you see, the referral and your presenting difficulties. Following the stipulated number of sessions (usually 6) we are required to write a summary to your referrer and you will need to return to your medical practitioner for a re-referral to us, before you are eligible for any further rebates on subsequent sessions. Additionally, if the referral is written for your child, a rebate is not eligible for parent only sessions (Although there is hopeful to be amendments coming within Medicare soon).

Can I see the therapist on my/our own to discuss our child/young person without the our child/young person in the session?

Yes. It is part of our initial assessment structure, that parent/s attend for a parent interview before your therapist will meet with your child. This allows parents to discuss concerns without the child present and develop a plan for how to best engage the child in the therapy. If the child has a referral, a rebate is not eligible for a parent only session.

Can I get rebates for Medicare or Private Health Cover at the practice?

Yes. Rebates for both Medicare and your private health fund are available at Side by Side Psychology practice, depending on your therapist. The rebate amount for Private Health funds will vary across funds. You also need to choose either Medicare rebate OR a Private Health fund rebate each session as both cannot be used on a single session.

What information will I need to provide at the first session?

At the time of booking, our Client Relations Team will have given you information about the cost of service, rebate amounts likely and referral information required. At the first session if it is face-to face, you will be taken through the Explanation of Service document on an electronic tablet. This outlines the cost, cancellation policy, consent and other obligations between therapist and client. Once this is understood and agreed to, a copy will stay on the electronic client file and one will be emailed to you (our office is going paperless!). If you want to view this document prior to your appointment or bring it in completed to your session, then click to download the form here.

Online Forms

The Explanation of Service Forms are here for you to download and keep. Alternatively and conveniently for Telehealth clients you can also complete these and your Consent forms online which will be submitted directly to your Psychologist.

Explanation of Service and Consent Forms-Online Form

NDIS Service Agreement for Plan Managed Clients-Online Form

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